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Featured why do people use this term?

Discussion in 'Obsessions and Interests' started by harrietjansson, Mar 4, 2021.

  1. harrietjansson

    harrietjansson Well-Known Member

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    Is it just me or do you also find the term Tragedy to be a bit confusing. Wiki says it has to do with Greek drama and is the opposite of comedy. Do people who use this term even know anything about Greek drama? Perhaps I am very bad at terminology from Greek drama and should know more about this? Or do people use words they don't even understand themselves?
     
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  2. Judge

    Judge Well-Known Member

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    Nouns like this often have multiple meanings in the English language.

     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2021
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  3. harrietjansson

    harrietjansson Well-Known Member

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    ?????

    To me it's just a word people using without even understanding it. People often use words without understaning them. They just use it because it is popular. I really disslike this.
     
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  4. Judge

    Judge Well-Known Member

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    I don't know anyone speaking native English who defaults to a Greek play to define a tragedy. It's just a way to elaborate on a calamity or express sadness.

    The Bee Gee's singing about "Tragedy" is based on sadness and loneliness.

    When I do rarely elaborate on a play or movie in this regard, I use the term "Greek Tragedy".

    Definition of tragedy

    1a : a disastrous event : calamity
    b : misfortune
    2a : a serious drama typically describing a conflict between the protagonist and a superior force (such as destiny) and having a sorrowful or disastrous conclusion that elicits pity or terror
    b : the literary genre of tragic dramas
    c : a medieval narrative poem or tale typically describing the downfall of a great man
    3 : tragic quality or element

    Definition of TRAGEDY
     
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  5. harrietjansson

    harrietjansson Well-Known Member

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    My biggest issue is that many words can have different meaning for different people. This word doesn't say much to me at all. Is this an asperger issue or is it just that I care about understanding people?
    Am I the only here getting confused when words don't have a good defintion?
    A good example is the word Keyboard. It can refer to eg a computer keyboard or a keybord on a piano. It is very easy to know what one is refering to depending on the context. With tragedy I don't understand since it is more abstract and unclear. You bassically have to guess how the person is using the word.

    It's probably a word you use because your are supposed to use it. It's like saying hello. You are supposed to do it.
     
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  6. Judge

    Judge Well-Known Member

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    You aren't alone. But you must consider just how complex- and bizarre English can be to most people who would otherwise default to another language. An issue having nothing to do with autism at all.

    In the case of any formal use of English, it's best to use the appropriate dictionary to look up the actual meaning of words being spoken by a specific nation that may reflect differences in spelling. And to be mindful of these nouns with multiple meanings and their priorities. It doesn't help that English doesn't really have modal particles to emphasize words as can other languages. Where you just have to accept that when people say "tragedy", they mean something really bad happened. Yet as to how bad it may be is anyone's guess.

    And then there's the wonderful world of slang that truly separates or unites so many different peoples who all default to the English language as their native tongue. Where there may be words that have no meaning in one country, but mean a great deal in another. Or where an English word with a common meaning in one country has a very different meaning in another. "Fanny" means one thing in America, and quite another in Ireland. :eek:

    And on the Internet it's fairly common to run into people using words in their own language incorrectly as well.
     
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  7. OkRad

    OkRad μῆνιν ἄειδε θεὰ Πηληϊάδεω Ἀχιλῆος οὐλομένην V.I.P Member

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    To understand what people refer to in regard to Greek drama, you can read Aristotle's Poetics. It's a great read and very smooth, funny, and soooo interesting. Read that work and not commentaries. Commentaries obfuscate anything he says but he says what he says SO CLEARLY there is no need for commentary until you finish and maybe just look up a few historical terms.

    Now, as to before Aristotle, you would have to read the Greek tragedies. They are STUPENDOUS. Absolutely riveting. Euripides will have your hair standing on end.

    Now AFTER Aristotle, there is a crap load out there dating centuries back and everyone started to use Aristotle as the grand description of Drama. In fact, Shakespeare's plays are as close to Aristotle's requirements as one could get. For instance, the tragic figure must be wealthy and elite (Hamlet). There must be a reversal (Oedipus realizes his wife is him mom and his kids are now his siblings), a recognition (Odysseus' scar) and then loads of mayhem. Babies are thrown over walls (The Trojan Women), people are enslaved who were queens (Andromache, wife of Hector), people are slashed to pieces (too many to list) kill themselves (Aias), etc etc etc.......it's a blood bath.

    Now comedy is awesome, too. Read some Aristophanes if you want to make yourself laugh. He wrote DURING the Peloponnesian War and was advocating PEACE! One guys even makes his own peace treaty (The Acharnians) and some women decide to make the rule since the men only want to fight (The Assembly Women). And of course, there is Lysistrata, perhaps his most well know. He did get sued twice by Cleon, so their freedom of speech had limits. But he bounced back.

    Anyway, those Athenians left us a lot to think about and have fun with. Hope this helps!! :)
     
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  8. harrietjansson

    harrietjansson Well-Known Member

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    It has nothing to do with English. I hear this word in Swedish as well.
    It's more about having to read between the lines. I guess aspies like me focuse too much on meaning of words.
     
  9. Judge

    Judge Well-Known Member

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    If you are so regimented about the meaning of words, then you must apply formal dictionary terms and their priorities in accordance with their respective language.

    A dynamic that has everything to do with whatever language you're referring to. With no guarantee however as to how others popularly use- or abuse their own language. Regardless of one's neurology.
     
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  10. harrietjansson

    harrietjansson Well-Known Member

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    When people say "It's a tragedy" they just refer something that has a very "not so positive" ending?
    They say that 7 people being severly injured is a tragedy. It's often used when people are severly injured or killed.
    Tragedy is often used when speaking about people getting killed.
     
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  11. harrietjansson

    harrietjansson Well-Known Member

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    sure but Swedish and English use the term in the same way.
     
  12. Judge

    Judge Well-Known Member

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    Most any native speaker of English defaults to a tragedy as being something nebulously bad. With "bad" being the operative word. Where it might mean anything from a stubbed toe to a beheading. And if you want to know more details it may be incumbent upon you to ask more questions.

    A social dynamic that would be identical for Neurotypicals every bit as much as those with autism.

    Bottom line: When someone says "tragedy" in English, forget Greek plays and focus on whatever may amount to bad news by another person whether it's exaggerated or not.
     
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  13. harrietjansson

    harrietjansson Well-Known Member

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    I think you right. Ask the person to be more concrete.
     
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  14. Judge

    Judge Well-Known Member

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    I think I see your point. That indeed at times you may end up conversing with people who are just accustomed to not speaking in terms of specifics. Maddening, but it's a dynamic that politicians and diplomats seem to relish. All compounded by languages using a common noun with multiple meanings.

    Yet occasionally I just find some people go through life avoiding being specific about much of anything. Can't really understand what motivates them, but I suspect most of us have had to deal with such conversations one time or another. Where such traits may or may not reflect the neurological divide.
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2021
  15. harrietjansson

    harrietjansson Well-Known Member

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    exactly. People often don't care about being specific.
    an example: a person saying "nice weather today!". The other person, being an aspie, thinking "what is the definition of nice weather?".
    I think most people don't care about definitions. When aspies are less concrete it is often due to the fact that they don't understand the other person's point of view or just don't want to tell all the personal details.
    But many so called NT's don't understand aspies point of view. This is mostly because of not being educated enough.
     
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  16. harrietjansson

    harrietjansson Well-Known Member

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    You cannot really get Stefan Löfven to answer questions. I don't really listen to the guy anymore.
     
  17. Judge

    Judge Well-Known Member

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    It would seem to me that choosing not to speak in specifics is somewhat akin to small talk. Almost like a polite round of fencing. Where no one wants to get hurt or hurt another. "Playing it safe".

    Where or course most of us on the spectrum would surmise, "Then why bother?"

    Where nothing of any value is communicated. Socialization only for the sake of socializing. :confused:
     
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  18. Kalinychta

    Kalinychta Well-Known Member

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    By “nice weather” they mean sunny and warm. I’m not sure why that would be unclear. Every time it’s sunny and warm, people comment on how nice the weather is. Especially in the spring. You hear it constantly (small talk). Hence, aspie or not, after hearing a thing over and over, you come to understand what people mean when they say it.

    Same thing goes for the word “tragedy.” Again, not sure why context clues and life experience wouldn’t make someone’s usage of it perfectly clear. You gave the example of someone saying that a car crash was a tragedy. Why would anyone think they were referring to a play? Car crashes are common. Most people aren’t interested in Greek plays. Logical conclusion: they are referring to a traffic accident.
     
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  19. unperson

    unperson Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Tragic or tragedy is sometimes used sarcastically to mean over-wrought, like self absorbed narcissistic people who are a train wreck waiting to happen might be jokingly called 'tragic'.

    Very few people know any ancient greek literature these days, so you may be looking to the wrong field for exposition of meaning.

    This is from Urban Dictionary...

    tragic
    used to describe a person who lacks any sort of self-awareness or conception of how others perceive them; often characterized as woefully oblivious to their gaping flaws, which prevent them from achieving others’ respect or appreciation. A tragic person (see: trag) typically engages in behaviors that they wrongfully believe to be iconic, while most external parties find these antics cringe-inducing and/or trite. To refer to someone as “tragic” is an all-encompassing derision that asserts a person’s utter lack of redeemable qualities, coalesced by physical unattractiveness, dullness, incompetence, ill temper, social ineptitude, and idiocy.
    Person 1: Did you see what he posted?

    Person 2: Unfortunately, yes. He is so tragic.
     
  20. Tom

    Tom Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I like to make up new meanings and words.

    So if you get stuck on a very congested sighway for hours, it's a tragic jam.
     
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